“I want to show you the world, as it is all around us, all the time.”

How does Karl Ove Knausgaard’s collection of letters for his unborn daughter compare to Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet and Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me? All three are beautiful explorations of ideas; all are meant to guide, not to provide solutions. What distinguishes this book, however, comes as a shock: Knausgaard has become an optimist who finds joy and beauty wherever he looks. Those of us who savored the five volumes of his dark, autobiographical novel are meeting a new man here. After marching through hell, he now sees the “astounding things” that make life worth living.

Knausgaard, Karl Ove. Autumn.Translated by Ingvild Burkley, Penguin, 2017, p. 4.

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